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tv   Rock Center With Brian Williams  NBC  November 7, 2011 10:00pm-11:00pm PST

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as we start our second edition tonight, your story is about a time in america when forced sterilization was allowable by law, and in our lifetimes. >> legal in the united states in 31 states as a way to cull the genec herd. one woman has stepped up to the system ask we're going to tell her story tonight. >> we're going to go to richard engel to tell us why every american should care about what went down in greece and about what's going down in italy. >> people say, i don't want
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nothing, i don't want to pay nothing. >> your piece last week, boomtown, we had a lot of questions that stemmed from your story, from environmental impact, what is this stuff they found. how many folks can williston, north dakota, absorb? >> right. i'm ready to answer every one of those questions. and later, on this couch, tina fey. perhaps the leading woman in the entertainment industry in this country. and tina, i'll just put it this way, has had her share of fun with some of us on her show. >> what is that doing here? >> i don't know. i've never met brian williams but his dressing room has to be cleaned up every day between 11:00 and 11:30. that way by the time he gets back from the liquor store it's nice and tidy. >> good evening and welcome to "rock center."
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you used to hear people say in terms of the massive u.s. economy, when america sneezed the rest of the world got a cold. they don't say that too much anymore. in fact, right now we can't be around anyone sick because we're too highly susceptible to infection. well, tonight we begin with the trouble in greece. and maybe now italy, and how it reaches right into your american retirement account. the greek economy for starters is about the size of washington state. greece has roughly the same population as the state of ohio. but they are in so much trouble, and the problem is so globally connected, it will affect america's money. we sent our chief foreign correspondent richard engel to greece to try to explain this mess to the same folks you often hear say, it's all greek to me. ♪ >> reporter: if the world has a financial meltdown, greece could be ground zero. just don't tell the greeks.
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it might spoil their night. ♪ >> reporter: that mabe a bit unfair. but even some greeks say, they deserve their economic hangover. >> the party's over. >> yes, the party's over. >> reporter: christina and christos are the parents of two daughters. christina's 75-year-old mother lives with them too. >> we don't buy any clothes. >> nothing. >> reporter: in the last year their income has gone down. grandma's pension has been cut in half. and the situation is about to get worse. >> i think it's not so good for us. i don't know. >> you're afraid? >> yes. >> reporter: across town, vaso, a fashion designer, used to have nine employees. she's down to three. >> what impact has it had on you personally? >> a lot of stress. every day we are like this. we don't know what happened. tomorrow.
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>> reporter: the first chords of trouble were struck in 2002 when greece adopted the euro. that enabled the country to borrow at low interest rates. the 2004 athens olympics ran up the tab. but economists say most of the borrowing paid for bloated salaries and benefits at state-owned companies. around athens, stories abound. some utility and railroad workers making six figures. others retiring on full pensions at 45. those days of easy living and easy money are gone. long gone. this is what downtown athens looks like almost every night now, with anti-vernment demonstrations. this one organized by the communist party. they want greece to abandon the euro saying the country's gotten too expensive and forfeited too much economic independence.
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to which much of the world responds, stop whine whining. greece's problems are its own fault. more than 40% of greek workers haven't been paying their taxes. a lot of people are saying the greeks just don't like paying their taxes. >> yes, of course. greek people say, i don't want nothing, i don't want to pay nothing. >> the schools were bad, the roads were pad. >> of course. >> so people said, why should we pay tax approximate bravo. >> reporter: the bubble burst two years ago when greece admitted it was hiding a budget deficit three times what it had been reporting. the country's credit rating dropped to the lowest in the world. now greece owes $500 billion, a debt of nearly $50,000 for every person. and to get a european-led bailout, greece was forced to make draconian budget cuts. and even more are coming. 2,000 schools will close. health clinics too. >> i think there's been some -- >> reporter: a 27-year-old ph.d.
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candidate named christos recently returned to greece from the uk. he's afraid what was he sees. salaries slashed, schools are being closed, what's going to happen to society here? >> i think it's going to keep getting worse and worse until we go back 30, 40 years in terms of living standards. >> reporter: about one-quarter of the greek workforce is employed by the government. those jobs are being slashed. and for those who keep them, pay cuts. up to 50% for police, bus drivers, sanitation workers, and teachers likmarilena. she'll see her salary reduced by one-third. she blames the government for hiring too many people. >> translator: the result is some of them work and some of them sit. because there's nothing for them to do. >> reporter: now that's the case for hundreds of thousands of greeks. the official unemployment rate here is over 16%. a television journalist who says she hasn't been paid in five
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months showed me this corner. >> this is one of the big intersections in downtown? >> yes. this used to be a fast food restaurant. >> next to an appliance store, closed down. a bookstore, that one's also closed down. >> every day another shop is closing, another shop is closing, every day. >> reporter: this man used to be a waiter. how long have you been looking for a job? >> it's about five months now. >> reporter: five months, nothing? >> yeah. >> reporter: for the returning young ph.d. candidate, there are signs greek society is unraveling. >> i think they've lost all confidence. i know people who are actually taking their mon out of the banks and burying them in their backyards. >> reporter: what did people in greece think would happen? didn't they see that this day would eventually come? >> it happens everybody thinking that, that will be forever. >> of course forever didn't last. and now italy is following greece down the road of
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political and fiscal upheaval. and as a result, richard has now made his way from athens to rome. richard, first of all, it's just so nice to see you in a place where you're not getting shot at. second, if you believe in the domino theory you just flew today in the course of one day from one domino to the other. is anyone over there talking that way? >> reporter: they certainly are. italians are watching what is happening in greece and they want what is going on in greece to happen here, where the economic bubble burst and people are suddenly faced with these draconian budget cuts. we are now in front of the parliament here in rome. this economic crisis is already costing the greek prime minister his job. and tomorrow, sylvieilvio berlusconi, italy's long-time prime minister, faces a key vote in parliament. if he loses that vote, berlusconi could be thrown out of office. italy's economy is much bigger than greece's so deeper
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instability here will have a much greater impact around the world. the reasons italians want to get rid of berlusconi, it's a crisis of confidence, they don't think he has the credibility. >> richard, you're aware of where the story appears to be moving, in rome tonight, thanks. >> michl lewis is with us tonight from berkeley, california. he has become one of the celebrated authors of our generation. the movie form of his book "moneyball" is in theaters. he wrote "the blind side," he wrote the short "liar's poker." now "boomerang" which takes us right where the story is tonight. michael, first of all for all of us who are members of a layaudience, how is it that the greek economy finds a way to reach into our pockets, bank accounts, retirement accounts? >> it's kind of incredible, isn't it. i mean, not just the greek economy, but the short-term gyrations in greek politics seems to register immediately in the american stock market. and there are a couple of things
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that are going on. one is that the financial world, it's way too interconnected. so if greece is going to default on this $500 billion in government debt, and the people are going to lose money, and the people on the other end of that who have lent the money are mainly bankers. so it throws into question the solvency of banks. mainly european banks. but the european banks are connected up to american panks. so when people see greece default they think, oh my god, the banking sector is going to go down. again. but the other thing is just the market is a mood. and so the general malaise in europe and the prospect of greece going down leads to italy and spain and bigger economies defaulting on their debts casts a pall over the market. >> well, let's back up two sentencethere. let's do the difference between hearing greece is in trouble and
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hearing italy's in trouble. >> well, it's just -- it's size. i mean, the europeans have structured a rescue fund that is being basically rammed down the throats of the greek people. it's not clear they want the terms of the deal. but the fund is big enough to probably deal with the greek losses. it's not big enough to deal with the italian losses. and the reason for that is that the germans, basically, are going to end up paying the bill and the german public doesn't want to do it. there's already outrage in germany about paying this greek tab. so it's very interesting. at the top of european poll stijs, you've got elites generating a sort of result. yet the people who elected them don't approve of. the gmans don't want to bail out the greeks, the greeks don't apparently want to be bailed out. >> for an art history major in college as i once read you once
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were, you've gone on to become one of the chroniclers of the economic meltdown. and you've accurately described it, made a handsome living at it. as someone who is as steeped in it as you are, what's the one thing you want to shout from the mountaintops, a message that is in all of your books that people aren't hearing, aren't paying attention to? >> well, apropos of this crisis i mean, if you ask why is it that we are so vulnerable to this event, you know, far from our shores, the answer is that we still have the center of our life these massive banks that are too big to fail. they should have been broken up three years ago. when their solvency is called into question it has this massive ripple effect on the economy. and why we are sitting here today, three years afterhe collapse of lehman brothers, with these institutions that
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basically have us at their mercy, at the mercy of the greek government, you know, is beyond me. so what i would shout from the rooftops is, get out into the streets with the occupy wall street movement and protest. >> michael lewis, the message appropriately from berkeley, california, thanks very much, michael, for being with us on the broadcast tonight. we'll take a break here. up next, as you watch this next story you will likely ask over and over, how could this kind of thing have happened in this country? in our age? how could people have been sterilized against their will? dr. nancy snyderman introduces us to a victim who has climbed back to reclaim her life. >>and our guest here in the studio tonight, tina fey. first off, we're going to see if her forearms really are that big in person. and we're going to talk about the intentional confusion beten the names of our two s. s
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most americans would agree, the government has a lot to learn from that physician's oath to do no harm. but it's tougher to explain this. doctors and government officials conspireing on a project so horrible, it is hard to believe it happened in our country and
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not that long ago. we have a story here tonight about cruelty in the name of science and about the government in effect trying to play god. but it's also about the strength and resilience of the human spirit and about a remarkable woman named elaine riddick. dr. nancy snyderman takes us tonight to north carolina to investigate a state of shame. >> reporter: the serene charm of winfall, north carolina. a sleepy town where the river empties into the sound. buried in the stillness of this place it seems time has forgotten a secret shame. >> it was a hush-hush type of thing and the records and files were all hidden away down in the basement, locked under key. >> reporter: until this past summer when the ugly truth about what happened here and in towns all across north carolina could be hidden no more. >> if there's anyone in this room that's too embarrassed to
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tell your story, don't be. tell it. it needs to be told. and you need to tell it all. >> reporter: there were a lot of stories that shocked those in the room that day. stories of shame, confusion, grief. but one story, one single story seemed to rise above the rest. >> i didn't want nobody looking at me because everybody knew what happened to me. that's how i felt inside my heart. i believed that every single day. i'm crushed. they cut me open like i was a hog. >> reporter: elaine riddick's story began in winfall. among the cotton fields that rose up to meet the tiny two bedroom house she shared with her grandmother, affectionately known as miss peaches. >> when you come back here, is it nostalgic, is it bittersweet does it bring up moments of anger? >> all of the above. sometime i can come here and i am -- i can look around me and
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find beauty in the ugliness. the ugly things that happened to me. >> reporter: it was 1967. elaine's mother was in prison. her father had abandoned her. and five of her siblings were in an orphanage. every adult she knew had betrayed her, with the exception of one, her grandmother. >> she just paid special attention to me. and she loved me. and she just -- gave me something that i needed. sorry. >> reporter: but life was about to get worse for the poor hungry little girl miss peaches tried to protect. >> as i was walking home i took the long road. the next thing i know i was drugged and i was attacked. >> and you were raped? >> and i was raped. and my life was threatened. that if i ever told anyone, that he was going to kill me. >> and you were 13? >> i was 13. >> reporter: that brutal rape
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resulted in a pregnancy. nearly nine months to the day of the assault, she went into labor. >> went and got to the hospital. and they put me in a room. and that's all i remember. that's all i remember. when i woke up, i woke up with bandages on my stomach. >> meaning what? >> at that time, i didn't know what i meant. >> reporter: what she didn't know was that the baby boy she gave birth to that day would be her last. >> no one told me. i never even knew. >> reporter: she had been sterilized. targeted by a state board that ordered that this kind of surgery be performed on thousands of north carolinians from 1929 all the way to 1974. 7,600 men, women and children determined by social workers to be feeble-minded or promiscuous were sterilized. usually without their consent. and it was perfectly legal.
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>> little boys, they would castrate them. little girls, they would go inside them and take out their organs. >> reporter: state representative larry wamball. >> why would they want to do that to a little girl? >> reporter: why would they? >> they had several reasons they thought were valid at that time. >> reporter: reasons based on a scientific theory called eugenics which became popular in the 1920s. ewe jen cysts believed poverty, promiscuity and alcoholism were unherted traits. a simple theory with a radical solution. sterilize those the state would have to take care of, and improve society's gene pool. some of america's wealthiest citizens of the time were eugenecists. dr. clarence gamble of the procter & gamble fortune helped found the human betterment league which produces brochures stocking fears of "morons"
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mixing with the general population. looking back was this a well-intentioned idea with the best science at the time, that then just went awry? >> i don't know if that was the best intention, to weed out negative things in our society. you're playing god over a whole group of people's lives. and i don't think we're supposed to play god like that. >> reporter: 31 states had legal eugenics programs. by the late 1960s, tens of thousands of americans had been sterilized. it began as a way to control welfare spending on poor white women and men. but over time, north carolina shifted focus, targeting more women and more blacks than whites. >> it was a monetary, economic thing. get them off of welfare so the state would not have to pay for their children. that's fine but you don't do that bying to this kind of then. some people have expressed to me that it borders on genocide. >> reporter: one-third of
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sterilizations were ordered on girls under the age of 18. some as young as 9 years old. >> what in the world will this lady do? >> i think you sterilize the entire caseload. >> reporter: the voices of social workers involved with eugenic sterilizations. you're hearing them broadcast for the first time. some of them explaining the decision to sterilize. in these recordings made in 1997 by rutgers professor johanna shown. >> >>. >> i think a lot of motivation for workers probably came from that. >> over a period of a year or two years you got all of the women sterilized. think that was perhaps a little excessive. >> reporter: in 1968, americans were rebelling. protesting the vietnam war. marching for civil rights. and while most states had abandoned their eugenics programs by then the sterilization of poor americans was still happening in north carolina. and no one seemed to notice.
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so it was for elaine riddick that a signature on a dotted line sealed her fate. during the cesarean birth of her only son, her fallopian tubes were cut and tied off. there is a document regarding your sterilization, grand mother consents and the procedure has been explained to elaine. >> well, how can you take a 13-year-old kid and tell them, this is what you're going to do to them? the terminology did not register. how can you explain to a 13-year-old kid that you're going to sterilize them? they took something so dearly from me. something that was god-given. >> trauma like this would cripple most of us, but in a moment when we continue this story after the break, we see her climb back.
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and what she did for her only son. again, our story continues right after this.
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welcome back. as we now get back to our story. for decades, north carolina sterilized people it deemed unfit, and it did so largely in secret. and now victims like elaine riddick are demanding answers from the government. dr. nancy snyderman continues with elaine's fight to rebuild her life and the state of shame that existed back then in north carolina. >> reporter: on the fourth floor
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of a government building in downtown raleigh, north carolina, thousands upon thousands of records few have ever seen. >> these are the eugenics files? >> yes, and they're confidential. they're records that are not open to the general public. >> reporter: state archivist dick langford is keeper of the files that hold the secrets of one of the most controversial practices of modern history. the mass sterilization of americans against their will. >> when you've looked at them, what was your initial response? >> i look at them with a heavy heart. because i realize these records, as patient records, have impact on people's lives. >> reporter: when you look at these records you realize they're from not that long ago. 1950s, 1960s. and they represent all kinds of people. take this one, for instance. a teenager who was sterilized because she was deemed promiss quus at the age of 8. and here's one.
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a 16-year-old incest victim. social workers got consent for her sterilization from the father who raped her. and then there are the records of elaine riddick. sterilized after being raped at age 13. social workers had declared her promiscuous, mentally retarded, unfit to procreate. but elaine had something to prove. >> i ended up going to college. i took the entrance exam. i passed. i got in. >> reporter: and she graduated with an associate's degree from a technical college in 1982. is some of this saying so you by your actions, you guys were so wrong? >> yes, definitely. definitely. you know, i'm worthy. i'm not that little nappy-haired, dirty-clothed, hungry little girl anymore. i don't know where i would be if i listened to the state of north carolina. >> reporter: her proudest achievement has been her son.
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born 43 years ago and under unimaginable circumstances. >> hey, ma. good to see you. >> hi, i'm nancy. >> nice to meet you. >> you're tony. >> yes. >> you're a strapping guy. >> reporter: tony riddick is a successful entrepreneur. >> you must be unbelievably proud of your mother. >> oh, absolutely, i am. this is my buddy, my friend, my mother, my everything, my sister. i'm proud of her because she never stopped fighting. she continues to fight. i think that's very important. >> reporter: what do you want? >> what do i want? well, what do i want? i would like for the state of north carolina to right what they wronged with me. at one point i sued the state of north carolina for $1 million. it's been over 30-some years ago. >> what did you expect when you filed that suit for $1 million? >> i expected for them to give me $1 million. >> reporter: she got nothing. she lost her case against the state because a jury decided no laws were broken.
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she appeal the it all the way to the u.s. supreme court, which declined to hear her argument. >> i was embarrassed. and i was surprised. >> reporter: all she and the other 7,600 victims have is an apology. e-mailed to the winston-salem journal from then-governor mike easley in 2002. but after mounting pressure from reporters the state decided to do more and convened a task force in 2003. nothing resulted. then another task force came. and went. >> we're the united states for god sakes. this is so wrong. >> reporter: which brings us back to that day last summer when victims and the their families had their say. in front of another government task force assigned to determine how they should be compensated. >> what do you think i'm worth? what do you think i'm worth? it doesn't matter what you think i'm worth, it's what i think i'm worth. >> priceless.
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>> there's nothing that the state of north carolina can do to justify what they did to me. what they did to these other victims. >> they told me to sign papers. i didn't sign no papers. i ain't never signed papers. that was not my signature on these papers. >> reporter: north carolina is the only state to consider compensation in the range of $20,000 to $50,000. but tony riddick, standing up for his mother and the other victims, said that's too little too late. >> and my mother's been sitting here suffering for 43 years and nothing has been done. this is sinister. >> i'm so afraid that they're going to try to wait till all these people die, and that's a shame. that's a mark. that's an ugly chapter in north carolina's book. we must step up to the plate and we must realize, take responsibility. >> there is nobody in north carolina who is waiting for anybody to die. >> reporter: bev purdue is north carolina's governor.
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>> -- to stand up and say, i want this solved on my watch, i want there to be completion. >> is there a plan to help these people? >> our plan is very thoughtful, i believe. we have gone through the process of having the hearings. you have to have people who self-report. i can't -- >> why? you have the records. why not proactively go out and find these people? >> even if you go out and proactively find them, there are lots of people, just like in other medical cases, who don't want their data shared -- >> as a woman and a governor of the state this is not about the money. there isn't enough money in the world to pay these people for what has been done to them. >> reporter: as the riddicks await the state's decision they focus on the part of the family legacy that really matters. >> there's something to be said about young men who are raised by strong women. >> yes, ma'am. my cup overfloweth. >> reporter: every day, they
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appreciate life's simple gifts. finding joy in tony jr., who has yet to understand his grandmother's place in a terrible chapter of american history. >> he gives me love. so with that, i can do anything in the world i want to do. and i can be anybody i want to be. >> i'm sitting here thinking, these aren't records you unearthed in a parchment book with sketchy details from the past. we just heard audio recordings of something saying -- someone saying, they sterilized an entire patient load. and to paraphrase the piece i'm sitting here thinking, this is the united states. >> not only that, these procedures were going on in the '60s and '70s but it was on the books legally until representative representative pushed and it was taken off in 2003. how could something like this even happen in this country? it's dark. it started really as an
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anti-economic poverty issue toward poor, white women and then shifted just that much towards i think what a lot of people are seeing as a racial issue. >> the word reparations, people roll their eyes sometimes. it's become red hot. so let's use your word compensation. because this is so recent. because, yeah, i was in high school. this was still going on. where does it stand now since you were down there? >> so governor perdue told me with her third commission now, she would like mental health to be free for these people. perhaps regular health care for the rest of one's life. but how much money do you give someone? let's say $20,000 to $50,000 seems to be the number that's been floating around. right now she is a democratic governor. has a republican legislature. north carolina's facing a budget deficit. this is going to come down to, i believe in 2012, an issue of how do we find the money? is it money well spent? and frankly, for a lot of the victims, is apology enough? i think, frankly, this may not come out satisfying people on both sides of the fence.
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>> powerful piece. you'll tell us what happens? >> you bet i will. >> thank you. a bit later on in this broadcast, tina fey will be with us. "30 rock" meets "rock center" tonight in this very studio. up next, it was the first story we ever aired all of a week ago. the north dakota boomtown where they're hiring just about everybody who shows up in need of a job. so many of you had questions and comments. harry's back to take it all on again tonight. p cue qu vaya. todos tienen p .
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at bank of america we're lending and investing in the people and communities who call the bay area home. from funding that helped a local entrepreneur start a business... to providing grants to a nonprofit which offers job training and placement... and supporting an organization working to help the environment. because the more we do in the bay area, the more we help make opportunity possible.
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welcome back to "rock
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center," edition two. we were still on the air last week when we found out that our story on williston, north dakota, our first story ever, had struck a nerve. harry smith reported last week on the oil boom there that has created a huge demand for workers of all kinds. >> 18,000 jobs we're estimating unfilled. >> that's how many you think are unfilled? >> unfilled. i have one friend of mine up here that's looking for 500 truck drivers right now. >> so as i say, there we were still on the air and via e-mail twitter and phone, the questions came in and the comments came in. we found one harry smith ever so happy to field all incoming questions. first of all, the first thing we got that night was, okay, who do i, how do i, where do i go, there is a website? >> the websites, the phones rang off the hook in williston, north
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dakota, the mayor's office, the chamber of commerce. >> you must be a popular man. >> i might be able to run for office. everybody was inundated. the one place in particular we mentioned, hospital has 60 openings, there are $25 million expansion, they were flooded with applications. and they were really pleased. because we helped grow their pool of applicants. they've hired at least six people who they've said as soon as we find you a place to live, you can come to work for us. >> now, a big deal that we did not have time to immerse ourselves in, this is fracking, hydro-fracking, and it's proving so controversial and environmentally damaging in other parts of the country, yet people keep referring to it to the answer to our needs. how is it different? >> let me give you a track of what trackfracking looks like. they drill two miles into the earth and the pipe starts to go sideways. we said last week it's a couple of hundred degrees down there.
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they shoot water in there with a little bit of sand and chemicals at high pressure into that rock and oil just comes oozing out. now, the only really environment environmental concern there is what happens to the waste water. they put it in ponds. there was a flood last spring, some of it got out and some animals were hurt. beyond that, the larger environmental issue for them in north dakota is, this has always been a pristine, wide-open, rural landscape. put 50,000 wells on there, it changes things. >> when you bring 50,000 people in, where do those people go? let's say they're moving in in november. >> don't. that's one of the things i talk to the mayor today and he said, please, please, please. this is what it looks like in williston in january, in february, in march. they had over 100 inches of snow there last year. they broke a record. if you don't have a place to stay, of which there are precious few, don't come.
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take your time, get your ducks in order, find if you can -- lay your plans with a job and a place to stay, but don't come and expect to sleep in a parking lot, especially when it's that cold outside. >> i bet you're real popular out there. harry smith, our plan in willis williston williston, you're going to go back in the dead of winter and follow up on this? >> we promise. >> thank you, sir. if you'd like to know more about opportunities in williston, it says we have resources on our website. rockcenter and nbc.com. up next after a break, like us tina fey was first to realize the ticket to success on television is using the address of this building in your title. tina fey of "30 rock" joins "rock center" after this break. .
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here are the basics. seven emmy awards, three golden globes, and most notably to a lot of people, the mark twain prize for american humor presented at the kennedy center in washington. tina fey of "30 rock" is here visiting "rock center," which made a lot of sense to us. we welcome a woman commonly known as the preeminent woman in comedy today. for the record your forearms are nothing like they are -- you have feminine, normal forearms. >> as far as you know. >> tina, thank you for doing this.
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>> thank you for having me to your beautiful home. >> it is a lovely home wide receiver we should deal with the name issue. i want to be the first to say in naming this "rock center" it was our intention to get the viewers who were looking for tina, for alec, for tracy, to stop by. like what they see but come to us entirely mistakenly. >> that's not going to help you. >> they are similar. the graphic treatment. >> the graphics are similar. i'll tell you, this is not a lie. when we were first starting the show, we wanted to call "30 rock," we wanted to call it "rock center." that was our first choice. and we were told we were not allowed to call it "rock center." >> and we checked with your guys, you have guys. >> i have guys. >> and we had to run all the traps and say, would it be okay? and the answer came back -- >> i don't know what's happened because we were told, no, the people who owned the building didn't want that. we also wanted to call the show -- i wanted to call the show "the peacock."
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because i thought that would be kind of funny and the alex character would be like a peacock. we were told it was a very serious, you know, important symbol of a big, strong, important network and we can not use it. >> and -- >> and my husband kept saying we should call it the show "two and a half men." which was taken. >> which was important. >> would have been sense. >> congratulations on the success. >> thank you. >> just insanely successful television show. >> well, we're filming season six right now. and we come back on the air in january. you know. if everything's still here. >> yeah, it will be, i promise. your family news is big. daughter alice has a little sister named penelope. >> yes. >> you were kind enough to send us a birth announcement. what i noted was, like when our kids were young, alice's smile
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cradling her little sister is lovely. there is a maniacal side of -- just a little bit of maniacal side in her smile. they all want to consume their brother or sister. >> they do. it's funny. you give a kid, only child for six years, then you go overnight from they're the center of everything to you're telling them, back off, stop touching her, don't put your hands there you're dirty, wash your hands, you're constantly yelling at them. she comes in, can i pick her up? asking after the fact. can i pick her up? >> you're working just as hard at home. what are you seeing by way of media? >> nothing. you guys called and said you want to come on? i said, i am in -- my head is a diaper. i don't know anything that's going on in the news. i know we're supposed to prepare for hurricane irene. that was the last thing i saw. >> that's what we're telling everyone. >> anything beyond that -- i hear everything's going great, though. >> especially in greece, your
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homeland. really nicely done there. >> oh, i'm not taking the blame for that. >> no? you're a greek-american. >> i am half german and half greek. i am so furious at myself right now about all that's going on. >> give it some time it will reach everywhere in europe and here. >> so tired of bailing myself out. >> we'll take a break. when we come back, i want to know what life has been like at home watching the world go by. if not media or contemporary news. we're back with tina fey right after this. i also have a question about a quote i read in your book. >> you didn't read it. >> of course i did. .
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we're back with tina fey. here's the quote we mentioned before the break. ego main yaks of average intelligence or less often end up in the field of tv journalism. now, what on earth would -- yes? >> hear me out. in the book i was talking about how you don't want to tell anything serious or personal that happened to you, you don't necessarily want to talk about it in interview because then it's fair game for every interview you do, ever, for the remainder of your short-lived career. so, you know, it's mostly -- certainly not anyone here. not anyone at the beautiful nbc. >> of course, not anyone in the building. >> have you ever done a red carpet? >> sure, yeah. >> it's that great red carpet journalism. why are you here? what are you wearing? then all of a sudden out of the blue, are you going to have fun tonight at the sir cuss? what do you think about that guy
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in arizona who killed all those girls? >> they do that to you. >> a lady said backstage at the emmys, a pretty good one, a year we actually won something at the emmys, she said to me, joan wrote the book "the year of magical thinking." what a magical year you've had. >> that was the transition. so much of your writing is didian-esks. >> such a magical book, about a great year. there was one time there was, hey, how are you feeling? charlie sheen went to rehab today, do you have anything you want to say to charlie? i don't know charlie sheen. >> you obviously would have tweeted a personal message. >> you feel like a jerk if you don't have well-wishes for charlie sheen. >> what have you been watching? you have to have -- you're a child of television, you're one of us, you're a creature of the form. >> i am, i've been in this weird -- i was on maternity leave for about like nine days. >> yeah.
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>> you watch different stuff because you're up nurse organize something in the middle of the night. you watch like -- "extreme couponing." "cake boss." you know. maternity leave's about to end and you're like, oh, i've seen this "cake boss." >> do you watch any "how it's made," "antiques road show"? >> "storage wars," i didn't get on board. "real housewives." i didn't like it when they're fighting. >> which state? >> only new york and beverly hills. >> not new jersey? >> subhuman. >> all about family? >> fam-bigly. >> it's all about family. i find jersey so far and away the best of the -- >> it's so rough. >> compared to the gentleness of orange county? lan that? >> orange county, i literally can't tell the women apart.
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they look like a fire at a wax museum, i can't tell what i'm looking at. >> that's so nice. >> so nice. >> for them, to be a fire at a wax museum. >> yeah. what else? what else is going on? >> you're a fan of andy cohen. >> i've done that show. i think -- like this show, it reminds me of old timy tv where you kind of just go in. you do get a little boozed up on that show. >> tap water it is. >> i'm worried about "the real housewives" franchise. they don't need to fight all the time. >> without that they don't have television. >> i just want to see their weird houses. >> thank you for visiting us in ours. it was very kind of you, now that the kids are in bed. our thanks to tina fey for visiting us here on the sec-ever "rock center." you did very well, i think. that's all for us. police trying to stop a vandal who is fixated on one bay area family. why they are not going-over well on the peninsula.

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